So…I found a “new to me site” yesterday called Wattpad. I was excited. One of my favorite authors, Claire Farrell, is on it. She posted up some of her short stories, etc. I thought, “This is a GREAT site!” Writers can post their stories, or a chapter or two from a story they’ve published. It’s one more way to interact with readers and promote their books.
Twenty-four hours later, I’m checking out their site, seeing who else is on, and I accidentally find another favorite author of mine, Molly Harper, except it’s NOT Molly Harper. Her book had been pirated. All I can say is that I read…A LOT. I recognized her story right away. I immediately reported the stolen book to Wattpad, and messaged Molly. She messaged me back, and hopefully, something can be resolved.
Am I upset with Wattpad? Not yet. They can’t possibly know the second a pirated book has been posted. There are millions of books out there in the universe. If they don’t take the book down, I’d have issues with them. Until then, we’ll see what happens.
I think there’s a HUGE lesson to be learned here. Writers (and readers) need to help writers. These sites can’t do the job of policing themselves on their own. If I spot a book I KNOW is stolen, and do nothing about it, I just became part of the problem. I read a LOT of vampire fiction. I was able to confirm it was Molly’s book after the first two paragraphs. I was angry for her, as I know the amount of time that’s involved in writing a story.
Will I stay on Wattpad? I think so. I like the concept of it. There are a LOT of teenagers on there, so I feel a little old, but having another networking platform isn’t a terrible thing. I would also say that it wouldn’t hurt to have an account with them if you are a writer, even if it’s just to police the site. You know your own work better than anyone else. You can’t police EVERY blog, Facebook page, website, or tweet, but you can’t avoid these places either.